IN THE NEWS

Nov 22, 2021
ABA Journal

Lawyers call on members of the profession to defend voting rights

“We’re lawyers. If we’re not speaking up for this issue, who will?” says Lauren Stiller Rikleen of Lawyers Defending American Democracy, a group pushing for more attorneys and firms to take action against the restrictions. 

Oct 18, 2021
Bloomberg Law Opinion

Disciplinary Complaints Await Former Assistant AG Jeffrey Clark

Bloomberg Law has published an op-ed by LDAD steering committee members James McHugh, John Montgomery, and interim Executive Director Lauren Rikleen. The piece considers the fate of former Acting Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Clark, who is the target of LDAD's most recent ethics complaint.

Oct 18, 2021
Bloomberg Law Opinion

Disciplinary Complaints Await Former Assistant AG Jeffrey Clark

Bloomberg Law has published an op-ed by LDAD steering committee members James McHugh, John Montgomery, and interim Executive Director Lauren Rikleen. The piece considers the fate of former Acting Assistant Attorney General Jeffrey Clark, who is the target of LDAD's most recent ethics complaint.

featured press
Oct 17, 2021
The Guardian

Pressure mounts on ex-DoJ official Jeff Clark

Jeffrey Clark, a former top environmental lawyer at the Trump justice department accused of plotting with Trump to undermine the 2020 election results in Georgia and other states, is facing ethics investigations in Washington that could lead to possible disbarment, as well as a watchdog inquiry that might result in a criminal referral.

Oct 5, 2021
The Hill

Group asks DC court to investigate DOJ official who peddled false election claims

A group of legal heavyweights on Tuesday asked the disciplinary panel of the D.C. Court of Appeals to investigate a former Department of Justice (DOJ) official who allegedly sought to use his official position in the federal government to overturn former President Trump’s election defeat.

Oct 5, 2021
Reuters

Attorneys file ethics complaint against ex-Justice official over plot to help Trump

A group of prominent attorneys on Tuesday filed an ethics complaint against Jeffrey Bossert Clark, a former top Justice Department official who is under investigation for allegedly plotting to help former President Donald Trump overturn the 2020 presidential election.

Oct 5, 2021
National Law Journal

Trump DOJ's Civil, Enviro Leader Faces DC Ethics Complaint

The former head of the U.S. Department of Justice's civil and environment divisions during the Trump administration should face serious sanctions for his "extraordinary" and "unethical" conduct during the 2020 presidential election.

Oct 5, 2021
Above the Law

Trumpland Lawyers Face Bar Complaints After Engaging In Some Light Coup-ing

In DC, a group called Lawyers Defending American Democracy demands accountability for Jeffrey Clark, who attempted to persuade his bosses to send a letter to election officials in Georgia — and then the rest of the swing states — urging them to let the legislature override the will of the voters.

Aug 31, 2021
Law 360

Texas Bar Launches New Investigation Of Paxton Election Suit

The State Bar of Texas has agreed to investigate Attorney General Ken Paxton after four former state bar presidents complained that his support of a lawsuit to overturn the 2020 presidential election should prevent him from practicing law in the state.

Aug 30, 2021
Law & Crime

State Bar of Texas Investigating AG Ken Paxton Over Alleged Ethics Violation

The State Bar of Texas has agreed to investigate an ethics complaint filed against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R). In a letter, the Office of Chief Disciplinary Counsel of the State Bar of Texas told complainant Gershon Gary Ratner, co-founder of LDAD, that his late July ethics complaint–filed along with 15 other Lone Star State attorneys–contained facts alleging that Paxton had engaged in professional misconduct.

Aug 30, 2021
The Texas Tribune

Texas State Bar Examining Paxton Misconduct Claim

A group of 16 lawyers who filed an ethics complaint against Attorney General Ken Paxton said Monday that the state bar was looking into its professional misconduct claim against the sitting attorney general. The group includes four former presidents of the State Bar of Texas and was organized by the group Lawyers Defending American Democracy.

July 26, 2021
Houston Chronical

Editorial: Past presidents of Texas State Bar want AG Paxton disbarred.

A 31-page complaint was filed last week with the State Bar of Texas by 16 Texas attorneys, including four past presidents of the State Bar of Texas, as well as legal scholars and legal-ethics experts.

July 22, 2021
Newsweek

Ethics Complaints Filed Against Texas AG Ken Paxton for Efforts to Overturn 2020 Election

Gershon Ratner, co-founder of LDAD, explained the lawsuit did not have "standing," as the Supreme Court inevitably determined. Ratner described Paxton's lawsuit as "a prescription for an autocratic president to perpetuate his power indefinitely against the will of the voters."

July 22, 2021
The Crime Report

TX Lawyers Call for Disbarment of ‘Unethical’ AG Paxton

Sixteen Texas lawyers, including four former State Bar of Texas presidents, have filed a complaint urging bar regulators to suspend or permanently disbar Texas Attorney General Warren Kenneth Paxton Jr. from practice.

July 22, 2021
ABOVE THE LAW

TX Attorney General Ken Paxton Files Fake Election Suit, Gets Real Bar Complaint

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has bigger problems than a bar complaint. Most notably, he’s under indictment for securities fraud and is facing a whistleblower allegations from his own staff that he took bribes and abused his office. And still, demands for your ouster from the legal profession by 31 eminent professionals, including four past presidents of the state bar, is never a good look.

July 21, 2021
LAW.COM

High-Profile Group of Lawyers Seeks to Suspend or Disbar Texas AG Ken Paxton

Asserting Paxton has brought “dishonor” to his fellow Texas lawyers and the legal profession, the group of 16 prominent Texas lawyers and the group Lawyers Defending American Democracy said in the complaint that Paxton has engaged in a pattern of “serious violations” of the Texas Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct.

July 21, 2021
LAW360

Past Texas Bar Presidents Want AG Paxton Reprimanded

Four former presidents of the State Bar of Texas are part of a group of lawyers who on Wednesday urged the bar to reprimand Attorney General Ken Paxton for attempting to overturn presidential election results and allegedly encouraging participation in the Jan. 6 Captiol riot.

July 12, 2021
The Hill

Lawyers group criticizes Noem, Abbot on National Guard to border

A nonpartisan group of lawyers released a statement on Monday in opposition to the deployment of non-federalized National Guard troops to the border by South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R), concluding that the states are “way out of their lane.”

July 13, 2021
Above the Law

Private National Guard Field Trips To The Border May Be Useless But At Least They’re Also A Constitutional Crisis!

If privately funded commandeering of the armed forces to enforce Tucker Carlson’s fever dreams sounds like a dystopian nightmare, then you are paying the appropriate amount of attention. Lawyers Defending American Democracy thinks this is a problem too, highlighting the disturbing conceit that patrolling an international border is “state” business as opposed to a federal prerogative with massive foreign policy implications.

June 26, 2021
NBC News

Rudy Giuliani's New York suspension proves dangers of Trump's lies

Giuliani’s troubles with the appellate division of the Supreme Court of New York began last January, when [...] Lawyers Defending American Democracy, presented a detailed complaint alleging that Giuliani “knowingly propagated a false narrative of election fraud to delegitimize ... Biden’s presidential victory and to undermine public confidence in the national electoral process.”

June 24, 2021
Courthouse News Service

Giuliani’s Law License Suspended in NY for Pushing Voter-Fraud Lie

A group of attorneys called Lawyers Defending American Democracy called on a New York disciplinary panel to immediately suspend Giuliani’s law license pending an investigation.

Giuliani’s claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election have landed him as a co-defendant in multiple defamation cases[.]

June 19, 2021
Boston Globe Letters

Legal profession was stunningly silent, even complicit, in face of Trump’s assaults

Too few lawyers have entered the fray to protect and defend the rule of law, let alone critique or hold accountable lawyers and elected officials who participated in the corruption of the Justice Department and the efforts to nullify the results of the 2020 election.

June 18, 2021
National Law Journal

'No Exception': Lawyers Ask DC Ethics
Board to Force Review of Barr Complaint

“Gross misconduct by members of the bar — be they private attorneys or the Attorney General of the United States — seriously stains the reputation of the legal profession with the general public, and also, no doubt, tempts other lawyers to skirt ethical boundaries."

Apr 7, 2021
Bloomberg Law

Law Firms Mostly Quiet in Fight Over Georgia Voting Rights

As corporate leaders continue a public pressure campaign against changes to Georgia’s voting law that have sparked a national debate, the country’s largest law firms so far are staying on the sidelines.

Apr 7, 2021
Law 360

Open Letter Encourages Lawyers To Protect Voting Rights

Lawyers should use their powerful and influential platforms to advocate for the protection of the rule of law and to fight against voter suppression efforts in the United States, according to an open letter signed by Paul Weiss’ chairman and hundreds of other attorneys.

Apr 7, 2021
law.com

National Group Calls on Legal Profession to Fight Voter Suppression

The national organization Lawyers Defending American Democracy has issued an Open Letter calling on law firms, bar associations and law schools to devote resources to protecting and expanding voter rights in the midst of efforts in state legislatures around the country to curtail access to the polls, including new restrictions passed in the state of Georgia.

Mar 4, 2021
NYC Bar Association Podcast

The Professional Disciplinary Complaints about the Conduct of Rudolph Giuliani

Jennifer Rodgers, member of the City Bar’s Task Force on the Rule of Law and CNN legal analyst, speaks with Christine Chung, a trial and appellate attorney, former federal prosecutor and steering committee member of Lawyers Defending American Democracy about disciplinary complaints against Rudy Giuliani.

Mar 3, 2021
law.com

NYC Bar Details Complaints, Calling for ‘Full’ Attorney-Discipline Investigation of Giuliani

The complaints against Mr. Giuliani allege serious misconduct,” said the city bar association in an 11-page report, and they “appear to be substantiated by extensive evidence—consisting in large part of Mr. Giuliani’s own statements.

Mar 2, 2021
Law 360

NYC Bar Supports Giuliani Probe Over Work For Trump

The New York City Bar Association backs separate ethics complaints filed in January by former New York State Bar Association president Michael Miller and by the bipartisan nonprofit Lawyers Defending American Democracy that contend Giuliani intentionally and repeatedly crossed ethical and legal lines.

Mar 3, 2021
law.com

NYC Bar Details Complaints, Calling for ‘Full’ Attorney-Discipline Investigation of Giuliani

The complaints against Mr. Giuliani allege serious misconduct,” said the city bar association in an 11-page report, and they “appear to be substantiated by extensive evidence—consisting in large part of Mr. Giuliani’s own statements.

Feb 28, 2021
law.com

‘Boldly Frivolous’ Gohmert v. Pence Election Lawsuit Spurs Bar Complaints Against Attorneys

“Not a single word in that amendment, or in any other, gives the vice president any role whatsoever in choosing which votes to count let alone the extraordinary, unilateral power to select who the next president should be, regardless of the outcome of votes in the various states,” the group said in a statement in January.

Feb 19, 2021
The Fulcrum

One vote both squandered and sullied the ultimate congressional check on a president

Donald Trump tried to steal the election and prevent the peaceful transfer of power. And 43 Republican senators said that’s OK when they voted to acquit him in the impeachment trial. It was time to “stop the steal,” as the former president’s allies so often shout. But it was the Senate that refused.

Feb 19, 2021
ABA Journal

How lawyers can honor Black History Month with action

This February, we mark Black History Month at a time of sharpened focus on institutional racism, the Black Lives Matter movement and a raging pandemic that has disproportionately impacted minority communities. Read the latest opinion piece by LDAD committee member Lauren Stiller Rikleen.

Feb 1, 2021
New York Daily News

More than 3,100 lawyers call for Rudy Giuliani’s law license to be revoked

More than 3,100 lawyers, including a former Attorney General, 14 ex-federal judges and three dozen former prosecutors at the office Rudy Giuliani once led, have joined a call for his law license to be revoked.

Jan 22, 2021
Law 360

Attys Go After Giuliani’s Law License Over Campaign Tactics

New York State Bar Association leaders and academics hit Rudy Giuliani with an ethics complaint Thursday, joining others in calling on the bar to suspend the former New York City mayor’s license and investigate potential professional violations for persistently touting false voter fraud claims while spearheading ex-President Donald Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election results.

Jan 21, 2021
The New York Times

Prominent Lawyers Want Giuliani’s Law License Suspended

Dozens of prominent lawyers have signed a formal complaint seeking the suspension of Rudolph W. Giuliani’s law license — the latest and loudest in a series of calls to censure him for his actions as President Donald J. Trump’s personal attorney.

Jan 21, 2021
The Hill

Lawyers group calls for Giuliani’s suspension from law practice, ethics probe

A national lawyers group on Thursday filed an ethics complaint against Rudy Giuliani that asked a New York court panel to suspend the Trump ally’s law license and undertake a review of his role in promoting false election fraud claims that some argue fueled the insurrection at the Capitol.

Jan 21, 2021
Forbes

Ethics Complaint Against Rudy Giuliani Seeks To Disbar Him In New York

A legal advocacy group called Thursday for Rudy Giuliani to be investigated and potentially lose his license to practice law, filing an ethics complaint against the attorney with the Grievance Committee of the New York State Bar after the former New York City mayor led former President Donald Trump’s legal campaign to overturn the election and pushed baseless election fraud claims.

Jan 21, 2021
Washington Post

Lawyers want Giuliani investigated, license suspended

A lawyers’ group filed an ethics complaint against Rudy Giuliani with New York’s courts, calling for him to be investigated and his law license suspended over his work promoting former President Donald Trump’s false allegations over the 2020 election.

Jan 21, 2021
The Guardian

Lawyers call for Trump’s personal attorney to lose law licence

A group of prominent lawyers has asked New York’s judiciary to suspend Rudy Giuliani’s law licence for making false claims in post-election lawsuits and urging Donald Trump’s supporters to engage in “trial by combat” shortly before they stormed the US Capitol.

Jan 21, 2021
Huff Post

Rudy Giuliani’s Law License Should Be Suspended, National Group Of Attorneys Says

A national group of lawyers filed an ethics complaint against Rudy Giuliani on Thursday, calling on the state of New York to suspend his law license following the efforts to undermine the 2020 election and spread lies from Donald Trump about widespread voter fraud causing his presidential reelection loss.

Jan 11, 2021
New York Daily News

LDAD Steering Committee member Lauren Stiller Rikleen authors an Opinion in the New York Daily News

“The debate over a second Trump impeachment has underlined the false equivalence that brought about Trump’s election four years ago. Some pundits and politicians argue that, with mere days remaining in Trump’s interminable term, it is time to forget about accountability.”

Jan 4, 2021
Newsweek

Louie Gohmert Should Be Disbarred Over Election Fraud Lawsuit, Lawyers’ Group Says

Lawyers Defending American Democracy (LDAD), a group that claims to represent 5,000 lawyers nationwide, has publicly asked for disciplinary bodies responsible for overseeing lawyers to censure Republican Texas Representative Louie Gohmert and any other lawyers who supported Gohmert’s lawsuit seeking to overturn the results of the presidential election in favor of President Donald Trump.

Jan 4, 2021
The Hill

The silver lining of the Trump presidency?

Rarely, if ever, has a president wound up his term of office with as many people thinking ill of him as will be the case when Donald Trump returns to private life. The grave flaws of his administration have already been chronicled. What hasn’t been much noticed, however, is the positive impact he has had on one important part of American life: public engagement.

Jan 4, 2021
Dallas Morning News

Gohmert, Dallas lawyer who sued to change election results violated ethics rules for lawyers, group says

It was a ‘specious suit’ with ‘absurd’ premise, and the attorneys involved, including the Tyler congressman, should be punished, Lawyers Defending American Democracy says.

Jan 1, 2021
The Hill

Sen. Hawley tramples the 2020 vote in his run to 2024

LDAD Co-Founder Scott Harshbarger & Dennis Aftergut caution that “those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” Follow the link below to read their latest Opinion piece for The Hill.

Dec 24, 2020
Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly

Former AG slams Trump attorneys for actions, bar leaders for silence

L. Scott Harshbarger doesn’t mince words in condemning the attorneys who have spearheaded President Trump’s failed efforts to undo the results of the 2020 election. “Many lawyers and their clients have tried to inject politics and partisan self-interest into this and achieve a result which is essentially a coup,” the former two-term attorney general says.

Dec 24, 2020
The Hill

Trump attorneys risk disciplinary action over wave of election suits

“President Trump’s barrage of litigation is a pretext for a campaign to undermine public confidence in the outcome of the 2020 election, which inevitably will subvert constitutional democracy,” read the open letter compiled by the group Lawyers Defending American Democracy.

Dec 23, 2020
Bill Press Podcast

Punish Trump’s Enablers!

LDAD Co-founder Scott Harshbarger joined the the Bill Press Podcast to discuss why the eighteen Attorney Generals who joined Texas AG Paxton’s now dismissed lawsuit to overturn the election should be disciplined and sanctioned. Along with host Bill Press, Scott is joined by Les Francis, former Deputy White House Chief of Staff for Jimmy Carter.

Dec 23, 2020
The New York Times Opinion

Is Trump Abusing Presidential Pardons?

LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell suggests actions Congress could institute to begin reforming the Presidential pardon.

Dec 22, 2020
The Bulwark

Holding the House 32 Accountable

Of the 126 House Republicans who signed the brief supporting the frivolous Trumpian Supreme Court lawsuit, 32 are lawyers. The bar should sanction.

Dec 21, 2020
The New York Times Opinion

Trump’s Loss, the Republic’s Win

LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut authors a letter published by the New York Times on the importance of civic virtue.

Dec 16, 2020
Connecticut Law Tribune

Scorched-Earth Policy Makes for an Unnecessarily Messy Presidential Transition

LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell’s latest op-ed reads in part, “Scorched earth is what a nation’s military forces do in combat operations against an invader’s forces. It is not what an elected government in a democratic country does when it is voted from office.”

Dec 15, 2020
Boston Globe Opinion

Trump’s election lawyers must be investigated

LDAD co-founder Scott Harsbarger and LDAD Steering Committee members Lauren Stiller Rikleen, and Dennis Aftergut argue that if disciplinary authorities do not address President Trump’s attorneys’ ethical violations, the rules of professional conduct will be regarded as a meaningless standard to other lawyers and to the public.

Dec 14, 2020
Dallas Morning News

Lawyer Group Seeks Sanctions Against Texas AG Paxton

The Dallas Morning News ran a story on our latest call for bar condemnation and disciplinary action against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, the initiator of the dangerous and frivolous Supreme Court petition.

Dec 10, 2020
Boston Globe Editorial

Trump attorneys must face disciplinary action

“More than 1,500 lawyers — including law professors, retired judges, and former heads of bar associations — issued a public letter calling the actions of Giuliani and the other attorneys pushing these baseless claims “a disgrace.” The signees urged disciplinary bodies to investigate their actions, and bar associations to publicly condemn them.”

Dec 10, 2020
Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly

Lawyers group calls for probe of Trump campaign counsel

More than 1,500 attorneys have signed an open letter calling on bar associations to condemn President Trump’s campaign attorneys and urging bar disciplinary authorities to investigate the attorneys’ conduct, the group Lawyers Defending American Democracy has announced.

Dec 9, 2020
People Magazine

Lawyers Across the Country Urge Disciplinary Investigation of Trump Campaign Legal Team

About 1,500 lawyers and counting have signed a letter condemning President Donald Trump’s campaign legal team, including former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, for spreading falsehoods and “a pattern of frivolous court claims” as well as working to undermine the 2020 election.

Dec 7, 2020
HuffPost

1,500 Attorneys Call On Bar Associations To Condemn Trump Campaign Lawyers

HuffPost features coverage of LDAD’s Open Letter calling on Bar authorities to condemn and launch investigations into President Trump’s campaign lawyers.

Dec 7, 2020
New York Daily News

The case for disbarring Giuliani and DiGenova

“You don’t need a law degree to understand that the clock may be ticking on some Trump lawyers’ licenses. Rudolph Giuliani and Joseph DiGenova are two whose conduct has raised questions about their fitness to practice law.” Co-authored by LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut makes the case for disbarring Giuliani and DiGenova.

Dec 7, 2020
The New York Times

Lawyers across the country urge bar associations to investigation Trump’s legal team

Arguing that “a license to practice law is not a license to lie,” nearly 1,500 lawyers issued a letter on Monday calling on bar associations across the country to investigate and, if needed, penalize the members of President Trump’s legal team, including the architect of his post-election strategy, Rudolph W. Giuliani.

Dec 6, 2020
The Bulwark

The GOP’s Burghers of Calais

When it emerged that Republican state officials from Michigan had been summoned to the White House in connection with President Trump’s already desperate struggle to unravel the results of this year’s general election, I thought of The Burghers of Calais. How else to capture their defeat—ironically at the hands of the leader of their own party, rather than some foe.

Nov 27, 2020
The Hill

‘Exit, pursued by a bear’

LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell writes, “Shakespeare’s “A Winter’s Tale” includes perhaps the most famous stage direction in the history of theater: “Exit, pursued by a bear.” The character pursued, Antigonus, comes to a bad end. Worse yet, it happens off stage.

Nov 21, 2020
New York City Bar

LDAD Applauds the New York City Bar Association’s Statement

LDAD applauds the New York City Bar Association and its President Sheila S. Boston for the statement it has issued in response to what they call “troubling and inappropriate conduct” by President Trump and his officials.

Nov 20, 2020
The Berkshire Eagle

Commentary: A Hard Landing

LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell wonders what must be going on in President Donald Trump’s mind as he files an “infinite number of lawsuits” in a futile attempt at a “Hail Mary.”

Nov 20, 2020
The Guardian

Donald Trump is still busy trying to bulldoze democracy

LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut issues a call to arms: “If we survive this moment of danger, the US must attend to the difficult process of legislative, perhaps even constitutional, reform to prevent the next assault on democracy. In the meantime, we need an all hands on deck approach, mobilizing political leaders and civil society that the US has for a long time used to promote democracy abroad.”

Nov 19, 2020
The Hill

Presidential intransigence threatens our health and national security

LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut co-authors an op-ed about the President’s shattering of time-tested norms — most recently, his refusal to facilitate the orderly transition of power.

Nov 19, 2020
The Bulwark

Trump Goes Out as He Came In

Donald Trump’s presidency is ending the way it began: with a handoff between administrations that could have been smooth but is instead confused, mired in controversy, and less useful for good governance than it could have been. So argues LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell in a new op-ed featured in the The Bulwark.

Nov 16, 2020
The National Law Journal

Now Is the Time for Bar Associations to Come to the Aid of Their Country

Laureen Rikleen, LDAD Steering Committee member, issues a powerful, critical and timely call to action for leaders of our profession. “Our country is at particular peril if its lawyers fail to recognize their unique role in protecting democracy.”

Nov 17, 2020
The Bulwark

The Week Democracy Pushed Back

LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut co-authors a new article celebrating the citizens and leaders who have used their voices and platforms to stand up to the the President’s maneuvers to distort our most precious right—the vote.

Nov 13, 2020
Boston Globe

Attorneys representing Trump criticized by fellow lawyers for backing his false claims of widespread election fraud

Lawyers nationwide are demanding that their colleagues stop representing President Trump since he is falsely claiming widespread voter fraud and such unfounded allegations are in violation of his duties under the US Constitution. The Nov. 10 open letter is signed by more than 1,100 lawyers.

Nov 13, 2020
Vanity Fair

Law Firms Abandoning Trump’s Efforts to Undermine Democracy

“The country and the world are watching to see how America responds to the President’s shameful attack on the legitimacy of America’s voting process,” the nonprofit Lawyers Defending American Democracy wrote in an open letter signed by over 1,000 attorneys this week.

Nov 13, 2020
USA Today

‘Abuse of the rule of law’: 1,000 ex-judges, attorneys slam Trump’s false claims of voter fraud

“A group of 1,000 attorneys, including retired federal and state judges, state attorneys general and law professors criticized the Trump administration over baseless claims of widespread voter fraud in the 2020 election”

Nov 13, 2020
law.com

Pressure Mounts on Attorneys Lodging US Election Fraud Claims

“Amid widespread condemnation and a protest called for outside the front doors of a New York law firm, the national bipartisan group Lawyers Defending American Democracy has released an open letter intending to increase pressure on attorneys and firms supporting claims of election fraud and calling out U.S. senators and the U.S. attorney general for what it characterizes as their complicity in obstructing the 2020 presidential election process.”

Nov 13, 2020
Miami Herald

Ethics at Risk

“Prestigious law firms are skating close to the ethical edge in filing lawsuits which undermine faith in the outcome of the presidential election.” So says a new Letter to the Editor by LDAD Steering Committee member Fred Lowenfels.

Nov 13, 2020
The Fulcrum

Now there’s an urgent opening to really make America great again

“The norms of democratic behavior must be restored. The divisions that have poisoned this country must be bridged. This calls for enlightened behavior.” LDAD Steering Committee members James McHugh and Stanley J. Marcuss author a new Op-Ed exploring what’s needed in the post-Trump era to truly make America great again.

Nov 8, 2020
Washington Post

Letter from 1,500 attorneys says Trump campaign lawyers don’t have ‘license to lie’

“President Trump’s barrage of litigation is a pretext for a campaign to undermine public confidence in the outcome of the 2020 election, which inevitably will subvert constitutional democracy,” the letter says. “Sadly, the President’s primary agents and enablers in this effort are lawyers, obligated by their oath and ethical rules to uphold the rule of law.”

Nov 8, 2020
ABC Journal

Hundreds of lawyers call for ethics probes of attorneys for election fraud claims; are bar charges likely?

Two former presidents of the ABA are among a group of more than 1,500 lawyers who are calling for ethics probes of lawyers making claims of widespread election fraud.

Nov 7, 2020
The Hill

More than 1,500 attorneys sign letter condemning Trump legal team

An open letter from Lawyers Defending Democracy has been signed by more than 1,500 attorneys, law professors and officials in the legal profession, including some high-profile signees such as Laurel Bellows, a former president of both the Chicago Bar Association and the American Bar Association.

Nov 7, 2020
law.com

‘A Disgrace’: Hundreds of Lawyers Call for Bar Condemnations of Trump Election Lawyers

Hundreds of attorneys, including former heads of bar associations and retired federal judges, are calling for bar associations to investigate and condemn the lawyers behind President Donald Trump’s election lawsuits.

Nov 7, 2020
Law & Crime

Former American Bar Association Presidents, 1,000-Plus Lawyers Call for Bar Investigations of Trump Campaign Attorneys

At least 1,500 lawyers—retired judges, law professors, DOJ alumni and two former presidents of the American Bar Association (ABA) among them—have called for bar associations to condemn Trump campaign lawyers and to investigate their post-election conduct.

Nov 5, 2020
USA Today

The Supreme Court must avoid partisan overreach on election cases

LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut co-authors an article urging the Supreme Court to resist the President’s attempts to use the court as his political tool. The future of our democracy depends on it.

Nov 2, 2020
Verdict

How to Repair the Damage Done by Donald Trump

It’s not too early to start thinking about repairing the damage to our democracy done over the last four years. On October 27, Lawyers Defending American Democracy, an organization with more than 2,000 supporters nationwide, did just that.

Oct 28, 2020
USA Today Opinion

FBI director Wray says the right things about protecting voters. But he needs to say more.

LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut co-authors an article explaining why voters concerned about voter suppression and interference need more reassurances from FBI Director Christopher Wray.

Oct 28, 2020
Bloomberg

The ABA Must Include Its Core Values When Ranking Judges

Laureen Rikleen is a LDAD Steering Committee member and former president of the Boston Bar Association. In an article published by Bloomberg News, she argues the ABA’s criteria for evaluating federal judges is flawed. This process resulted in a “highly qualified” ranking of Amy Coney Barrett even though her views are contrary to the ABA’s own stated values.

Oct 23, 2020
Washington Post

LDAD Letter Featured in the Washington Post

In a letter to the Washington Post, LDAD Steering Committee member Stanley J. Marcuss points out the deeply disturbing aspects of the Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination and why the nomination poses a threat to the institution and reputation of the Supreme Court.

Oct 19, 2020
Boston Globe

Boston Globe Editorial References LDAD’s Statement of Support for DOJ Employees

“As an open letter in support of current Justice Department attorneys and agents signed by a nonpartisan coalition of former prosecutors and judges, law professors, and practicing attorneys states that the American people need DOJ officials to ‘stand by their oaths and the Department of Justice’s duty to do justice for the public by not participating in partisan misuse of the DOJ.”

Oct 15, 2020
law.com

Standing Up to Barr’s Election Maneuvers: Former Judges and Bar Leaders Support Pushback by DOJ Lawyers

In their open statement, legal profession leaders have acted wisely—demonstrating their support for DOJ professionals who heed that call and refuse to stand by silently as a misguided Attorney General dishonors our Constitution,” write Frederick Baron, former associate deputy attorney general and director of the Executive Office of National Security, and Renne Public Law Group’s Dennis Aftergut, a former federal prosecutor and chief assistant city attorney in San Francisco.

Oct 8, 2020
Washington Times

Coalition of attorneys, ex-judges calls on career DOJ lawyers to speak out against Barr

A coalition of attorneys and judges on Thursday said they will support any Justice Department official who resigns or speaks out against what they say is “political misuse” of the department by Attorney General William P. Barr ahead of next month’s presidential election.

Oct 15, 2020
Bloomberg

Why Are DOJ Alums, Bar Leaders Speaking Out for Conscience Now?

Former Department of Justice trial attorney Joshua P. Bogin explains why he was one of more than 800 signatories on an open letter supporting DOJ attorneys who stand up to partisan actions by Attorney General William Barr. The letter is aimed to help preserve public trust that DOJ professionals are not simply pawns of whatever administration occupies the White House.

Oct 8, 2020
Law & Crime

Hundreds of Lawyers, Law Profs and Former Judges Warn: Bill Barr’s ‘Political Misuse’ of the DOJ Could Undermine Election

Several hundred current and former attorneys offered their support for Department of Justice personnel who may feel uneasy about being used for Attorney General Bill Barr’s political agenda. In an open letter published Thursday, the signatories warned of “difficult choices” facing DOJ employees who are worried about “political misuse” of the nation’s top law enforcement agency as the 2020 general election looms in the none-too-distant future.

Oct 8, 2020
Boston Globe Opinion

To protect the election, prosecutors and lawyers everywhere must stand up to Attorney General Barr

If mobilized to favor one candidate’s election success, the DOJ’s army of lawyers and agents could swing the outcome of a contested national vote against the people’s will.

Oct 8, 2020
Verdict

“Should Department of Justice Lawyers Defy William Barr?”

On Wednesday, a group called Lawyers Defending Democracy published an extraordinary, open letter addressed to the 100,000 professionals working in the United States Department of Justice. This letter was signed by more than 600 members of the bar from across the United States, including three former American Bar Association presidents, three former state bar presidents, eight former federal judges, and four former state attorneys general.

Oct 8, 2020
Politico

Legal professionals vow to stand against DOJ political interference

Three former American Bar Association presidents, as well as several former judges and state and local bar leaders, are offering support to any Justice Department officials who resign or speak out against evidence of politicization in the waning weeks of the 2020 presidential election.

Oct 8, 2020
Politico

Legal professionals vow to stand against DOJ political interference

Three former American Bar Association presidents, as well as several former judges and state and local bar leaders, are offering support to any Justice Department officials who resign or speak out against evidence of politicization in the waning weeks of the 2020 presidential election.

Oct 8, 2020
Politico

Legal professionals vow to stand against DOJ political interference

Three former American Bar Association presidents, as well as several former judges and state and local bar leaders, are offering support to any Justice Department officials who resign or speak out against evidence of politicization in the waning weeks of the 2020 presidential election.

Oct 8, 2020
Politico

Legal professionals vow to stand against DOJ political interference

Three former American Bar Association presidents, as well as several former judges and state and local bar leaders, are offering support to any Justice Department officials who resign or speak out against evidence of politicization in the waning weeks of the 2020 presidential election.

Oct 8, 2020
The Hill

Hundreds of attorneys and judges offer to support any Trump official opposing ‘political misuse of the DOJ’

Hundreds of attorneys and judges are offering support to Justice Department officials who resign or speak out about what they say is “political misuse” of the department by Attorney General William Barr in the lead-up to the Nov. 3 presidential election.

Sep 15, 2020
USA Today

Dannehy joins Justice honor roll by resigning from politicized Durham FBI Russia probe

Career lawyers should protest or resign like Dannehy to flag partisan misuse of the Justice Department in the election, our core democratic moment. So says LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut in his latest Op-ed (co-authored with Frederick Baron, former Associate Deputy Attorney General and Director of the Executive Office for National Security in the Clinton administration) for USA Today.

Sep 1, 2020
USA Today

The moment when the Justice Department lost the chance to dismiss General Flynn’s case

LDAD Steering Committee member Dennis Aftergut co-authors an Op-ed in USA Today that asks, “Are there any circumstances when a court could deny an unopposed prosecutor’s motion to drop a case?” His answer – Yes, corruption.

Aug 27, 2020
LDAD

Regarding the Use of the White House for the Republican Convention

Mark Meadows, the President’s Chief of Staff, says he is not concerned about possibly breaking the law in hosting the Republican Convention at the White House because “Nobody outside of the Beltway really cares.” In a letter to the Washington Post, LDAD Steering Committee member Stanley J. Marcuss calls this assertion “an insult to those living outside the Beltway.”

Aug 15, 2020
LDAD

Acting Is Too Serious for the Business of Government

The U.S. Government Accountability Office has ruled that the Acting Head of the Department of Homeland Security and his Acting deputy occupy their positions unlawfully. LDAD Steering Committee member Stanley J. Marcuss authors a letter on the appropriateness of bypassing the Senate when doing the business of filling important government positions.

Jul 28, 2020
USA Today

The unethical William Barr: 27 lawyers, 4 powerful allegations of dishonesty and deceit

Lawyers’ complaint is shocking evidence of Barr’s mendacity and a warning for us: He’s America’s most important public lawyer, and we can’t trust him.

Jul 28, 2020
Verdict

Verdict / Justia covers LDAD’s Disciplinary Complaint Against A.G. Barr

Today Attorney General William Barr is scheduled to testify before Congress. Meanwhile, less than a week ago, 27 nonpartisan members of the DC legal establishment, including four former presidents of the DC Bar, filed a disciplinary complaint for systematic violations of the canons of ethics by Mr. Barr.

Jul 28, 2020
Miami Herald

Donate to crowdfunding site so those who have served their time can vote, as Floridians intended

LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell weighs in on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to permit Florida to keep hundreds of thousands of people formerly convicted of felonies from voting in next month’s primary elections.

Jul 26, 2020
LDAD

Op-Ed: Rehearing in Michael Flynn Case Important to The Rule of Law

In a small but significant victory for the rule of law, a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. has decided to review a 2-1 panel ruling that Michael Flynn, President Trump’s former National Security Advisory, must be allowed to go free despite the fact that he lied to the FBI in its investigation of Russian meddling in the 2016 presidential election.  This may not sound like a big deal, but it is.

Jul 24, 2020
Bloomberg Law

Spotlights LDAD’s Complaint against Attorney General Barr

A new D.C. Bar complaint details the pattern of alleged ethical violations taken by Attorney General William Barr in the last two years that showed political interference in the Department of Justice’s law enforcement decisions and damage to the morale of DOJ attorneys, says Joseph Rich, who spent more than 36 years working for the DOJ under attorneys general from both parties.

Jul 24, 2020
The Bulwark

The Bulwark Features LDAD and asks "Should Bill Barr Be Disbarred?"

On Wednesday a group of distinguished members of the District of Columbia Bar forced that question by alleging that the attorney general has committed a series of serious violations of his ethical obligations as a lawyer. That the attorney general must be an exemplary lawyer is highlighted in the Judiciary Act of 1789, which created that position, and by subsequent codifications of the attorney general’s duties.

Jul 23, 2020
Courthouse News

Courthouse News Service cites LDAD’s Amicus Brief in Michael Cohen case coverage

Calling the government’s retaliation unprecedented in his 21-year career, a federal judge ruled Thursday that Michael Cohen was unfairly sent back to prison for writing a book during home confinement. Lawyers Defending American Democracy, a group calling for Barr’s resignation as attorney general, filed an amicus brief in the case on Tuesday. Represented by attorney Christine Chung, the group says Cohen’s case is about extortion.

Jul 22, 2020
Washington Examiner

Former DC Bar Association presidents call for investigation into William Barr

Four former D.C. Bar Association presidents are calling for an investigation into whether Attorney General William Barr violated its rules for lawyers practicing in the city. The four former presidents were among a group of more than two dozen D.C. bar members who sent a letter dated Wednesday to Hamilton P. Fox, who serves as disciplinary counsel, according to Politico

Jul 22, 2020
Breitbart

Lawyers’ group files professional ethics complaint against A.G. Barr

More than two dozen Washington D.C. lawyers on Wednesday filed an ethics complaint against U.S. Attorney General William Barr, accusing him of violating his professional obligations as a member of the local bar. This article was authored and originally published by United Press International.

Jul 22, 2020
Politico

LDAD featured in Politico: Past D.C. Bar Association chiefs call for probe of William Barr

Four former presidents of the D.C. Bar Association have signed a letter calling on the group to investigate whether Attorney General William Barr has violated its rules. The District of Columbia Bar authorizes lawyers to practice in the city and has the power to punish them for breaking its rules and to revoke their law licenses.

Jul 22, 2020
Just Security

Why 27 Distinguished DC Lawyers Filed a Complaint with Bar Association Against Attorney General Barr

It has been deeply disturbing to witness Attorney General William Barr persistently acting to undermine the rule of law over the past sixteen months. The administration of justice depends on lawyers honoring their ethical duties and playing by the rules, so the public can have confidence in the fairness and impartiality of our legal system.

Jul 6, 2020
The Hill

LDAD Steering Committee Member Eugene Fidell’s Opinion featured in The Hill

Just before the Fourth of July weekend, the Supreme Court of the United States, by what has now become its customary 5-4 vote, granted a stay of a lower court decision that would have required Alabama to permit Alabamians to vote by mail without having their ballots notarized or attested by two witnesses. Big mistake.

Jun 24, 2020
Scribd

LDAD Applauds George Washington University Law School Faculty for its Criticism of Attorney General William Barr

Professors and deans at George Washington University Law School renounced one of their most prominent alumni on Tuesday, releasing a statement vilifying Attorney General William Barr’s conduct since taking up residence in the 45th president’s cabinet.

Jun 15, 2020
LDAD

LDAD earns the endorsement of former Congressman Henry Waxman

Congressman Waxman (1975-2015; Calif.) has released the following statement in support of LDAD’s Open Letter to States and American Lawyers to Protect Against Voter Suppression...

Jun 10, 2020
Boston Globe

Why the Michael Flynn Case Matters to You

LDAD founder Scott Harshbarger and Steering Committee member Evan Falchuk author a new op-ed published by the Boston Globe arguing why the Flynn case is at the front lines of the most important battle of our time: that between the rule of law and law of the ruler.

May 27, 2020
Law & Crime

Legal Advocacy Group Defends Judge’s Order in Michael Flynn Case

A nonpartisan legal advocacy organization composed of attorneys and former federal and state judges filed an amicus brief on Wednesday defending U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan’s handling of the Michael Flynn case thus far. LDAD warned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit that Flynn’s case presented issues of significant constitutional consequence.

May 17, 2020
The Hill

On government and public confidence

LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell authors another persuasive op-ed for The Hill’s Opinion section. In it, he explores what it means for a President to foster the public’s confidence in government and the administration of justice.

May 11, 2020
Boston Globe

Judge Sullivan must reject Barr’s usurpation of judicial power

A new Op-ed by Professor Laurence Tribe urges Judge Sullivan to move ahead and sentence Michael Flynn.

May 11, 2020
LAUROL

Lawyers Allied to Uphold the Rule of Law (LAUROL)

LAUROL is a nationwide, nonpartisan coalition of lawyers, legal scholars, and retired jurists dedicated to “ensuring that all persons in the United States receive fair and impartial justice.” In a letter to the Judiciary Committee of the US House of Representatives, the group expresses their concerns about actions taken by the Department of Justice and the present Administration.

May 11, 2020
DOJ Alumni

DOJ Alumni Statement on Flynn Case

A statement made on behalf of former Department of Justice employees in response to the Department’s motion to drop the charges against Michael Flynn condemns President Trump’s and Attorney General Barr’s political interference, expresses support for the career employees of DOJ, implores Judge Sullivan to scrutinize the Department’s purported justification for dropping the charges, and calls on Congress to hold Barr accountable, including formally censuring him.

May 8, 2020
Washington Post

Experts weigh in on the pandemic

LDAD Steering Committee member Stanley Marcuss weighs in on President Trump’s refusal to let Anthony S. Fauci testify before the House of Representatives in a Letter to the Editor of The Washington Post.

May 1, 2020
The Hill

Today should be ‘Rule of Law Day’

LDAD Steering Committee member Eugene R. Fidell makes a powerful case in The Hill’s Opinion section. “ Law Day needs a facelift, and I suggest we begin by renaming it Rule of Law Day, because the Rule of Law itself — a phrase we usually employ when talking about other countries — is as much under siege as our society as a whole is because of the COVID-19 pandemic.”

Apr 11, 2020
The Hill

Federal officials fired by Trump face tough road in court

President Trump’s recent shake-up of agency watchdogs has his critics fuming, but legal experts say that federal officials fired for even apparently political reasons have little legal recourse. A group of legal heavyweights, Lawyers Defending American Democracy (LDAD), said Trump’s treatment of the inspectors general undermined the rule of law.

Mar 25, 2020
The Crime Report

300 Lawyers, Judges Call for Barr’s Resignation

Attorney General William Barr’s intervention in the Roger Stone case and his efforts to distort the conclusions of the federal investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election make him unfit to be the highest justice official in the U.S., charges a letter signed by 300 leading attorneys, former judges, and bar association presidents.

Mar 24, 2020
Law & Crime

Lawyers Call for Barr’s Resignation: COVID-19 Is a Danger to Our Health and Economy, Barr Is a Danger to Democracy

A self-styled non-partisan group of lawyers and former judges continued a tradition of sorts on Tuesday by calling for Attorney General William Barr’s resignation.

Feb 14, 2020
Boston Bar Association

Statement on Maintaining Public Trust in the Justice System

Lawyers Defending American Democracy applauds the Boston Bar Association’s warning that the prosecution of Roger Stone poses a serious threats to public confidence in the Department of Justice and the rule of law.

Feb 12, 2020
NYC Bar Association

Letter to Congressional Leaders and Dept. of Justice Inspector General Regarding the Prosecution of Roger Stone and Related Actions

LDAD applauds the statement issued today by the New York City Bar Association which calls for immediate investigations by Congress and the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General in connection with the prosecution of Roger Stone.

Jan 31, 2020
Above The Law

Hundreds Of Lawyers Protest On Steps Of Supreme Court To Demand ‘Impartial Justice’ In Trump’s Impeachment

Today, Lawyers for Good Government, along with Lawyers Defending American Democracy, Lawyer Moms of America, and Demand Justice will join together in solidarity to protest on the steps of the Supreme Court in an effort to demand that every United States Senator fulfill their duties and obligations to our country.

Jan 20, 2020
Boston Globe Letters

Senate trial underway beneath a shadow of partisanship

It is too often said that a Senate trial following impeachment is political, so the Senate can proceed in whichever way it chooses. Yes, the Senate is a political body, but that does not make an impeachment trial political.

Jan 14, 2020
Boston Globe Opinion

Why Mitch McConnell must allow Senate to call witnesses in Trump’s impeachment trial

By voting in favor of calling witnesses and demanding documents, Democrats will necessarily take the chance that the information revealed will help exonerate the president. If that turns out to be the case, so be it. At stake is not how best to achieve a preordained partisan result, but how best to conduct a fair trial.

Jan 7, 2020
law.com

‘Indefensible’: Hundreds of Lawyers Criticize McConnell Over Senate Impeachment Trial

Hundreds of lawyers have signed onto an open letter criticizing Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell for his comments saying the Senate’s upcoming impeachment trial does not have to be impartial. In the letter to the Senate, published Tuesday by the group LDAD, the lawyers said that McConnell’s “assertions cannot withstand scrutiny.”

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